ATO (Architectural Thinking Office) is a Parisian architecture studio led by Mathieu Mainoldi, an architect who places a strong focus on integrating projects into their surrounding area. The studio’s identity is influenced by Japanese culture, symbolised by the delicate balance between tradition and contemporaneity in which it is rooted.
ATO 後 signifies “after” in Japanese, while ATO 痕 also holds the meaning of “trace, mark, or vestige”. Architecture is thus positioned as the mark left by history, and buildings seen as bearing witness to the present, while looking toward the future. It’s this vision of temporality that underlies the firm’s approach.
In this light, the firm’s philosophy consists of finding the answer for each project to the question posed by French philosopher Paul Ricoeur: “How to become modern and return to sources; how to revive an old dormant civilisation and take part in universal civilisation?” The concept of transmission is at the heart of their method, in order to bestow meaning on their work.
From that point, ATO’s methodology focuses on designing architecture with concern for passing time and evolving customs and ways of life, all while addressing the specific features of the region, the vestiges of a rich and inspiring past. Architecture that embraces its originality thanks to its specific integration, and takes on meaning in response to its context - in short, created with individuals and users in mind.
Through this simultaneity, ATO aspires to create a unique environment that lends itself to dialogue and interaction between all members of society, making the aim of each project to unify through a shared sense of identity.
ATO brings a collective, multi-faceted approach to their projects, in the pursuit of simplicity and connection with nature. The studio looks toward a perpetually-advancing future with a focus on sustainability and relevant construction methods, and a belief in universal values.
Contact Mathieu Mainoldi, head of the architecture studio ATO, to make an appointment and start bringing your project to life.
Ordre des Architectes (French Board of Architects) Registration Number